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Tag: women’s writing

Caroline Wigginton. In the Neighborhood: Women’s Publication in Early America

Caroline Wigginton. In the Neighborhood: Women’s Publication in Early America. Amherst: University of Massachusetts Press, 2016. 240p., ill. ISBN 9781625342225. US$ 25.95.

In August 1749, Creek diplomat and trader Mary Bosomworth (also known as Coosaponakeesa) led a march of her tribesmen to Savannah. She had spent many years helping the English to establish a settlement in Georgia, and now she sought recompense for her services. Her march culminated in a meeting with Georgia’s council where she declared herself an “empress” representing her people. Bosomworth produced letters and petitions, but this scene of procession, spectacle, and conversation equally served as an embodiment of her authority and was meant to maintain her status within her neighborhood.

Coosaponakessa’s march is just one example from Caroline Wigginton’s ambitious In the Neighborhood. The book seeks to expand our understanding of early American women’s publications and to provide an analytical framework for them.

Paola Masino. Album di vestiti

Paola Masino. Album di vestiti. Marinella Mascia Galateria, ed. Rome: Elliot, 2015. 280 p., ill. ISBN 9788861928626. €19.50 (paperback).

This volume presents for the first time in its entirety the text that Paola Masino (1908-1989), an important Italian writer, wrote between 1958 and 1963 in her private notebooks. In what the author describes as “un’autobiografia narrata secondo la memoria degli abiti che indossai” (101), Masino evokes her life and that of the people around her through the memory of the clothes they wore. As in a metaphorical fashion show, the book captures moments and anecdotes from Masino’s life.

Ardis Cameron. Unbuttoning America: A Biography of Peyton Place

Ardis Cameron. Unbuttoning America: A Biography of “Peyton Place.” Ithaca: Cornell University Press, 2015. xiv, 223p., ill. ISBN 080145364X. US $24.95.

In this comprehensive analysis of Grace Metalious’s 1956 novel, its scandalous reception, and the movie and television show it spawned, Ardis Cameron establishes herself as the preeminent scholarly expert on Peyton Place. Cameron wrote the introduction to the Northeastern University Press 1999 reissue of the novel and has been the book’s greatest champion since.

Vincent L. Barnett and Alexis Weedon. Elinor Glyn as Novelist, Moviemaker, Glamour Icon and Business Woman

Vincent L. Barnett and Alexis Weedon. Elinor Glyn as Novelist, Moviemaker, Glamour Icon and Business Woman. Farnham, UK & Burlington, VT: Ashgate, 2014. x, 238p., ill. ISBN 9781472421821. £60 (hardback).

Vincent L. Barnett and Alexis Weedon provide the first full-length, scholarly examination of the professional life of the internationally renowned British writer and early Hollywood personality, Elinor Glyn (1864–1943). Although few recall the name today, the authors ably indicate that a serious study of Glyn – whom they call “a pioneer of a new mode of professional authorship” (3) – is long overdue.

Sari Edelstein. Between the Novel and the News: The Emergence of American Women’s Writing

Sari Edelstein. Between the Novel and the News: The Emergence of American Women’s Writing. Charlottesville: University of Virginia Press, 2014. 226p., 7 ill. ISBN 9780813935904. US $29.50.

Sari Edelstein’s Between the Novel and the News offers a bold corrective. While scholars and teachers have often connected male realist writers to journalism – the opening of Howells’s The Rise of Silas Lapham in which the eponymous character is being interviewed for a newspaper series is a quintessentially realist moment – critics have not given similar attention to how women writers in the long nineteenth century struggled to use and counter journalistic depictions of women and journalistic modes of narration. As Edelstein writes, “women writers have long regarded the press an ideological problem whose social and political influence had serious repercussions for lived experience” (148).

Jaime Harker and Cecilia Konchar Farr, eds. This Book Is an Action: Feminist Print Culture and Activist Aesthetics

Jaime Harker and Cecilia Konchar Farr, eds. This Book Is an Action: Feminist Print Culture and Activist Aesthetics. Urbana: University of Illinois Press, 2016. ix, 250p. ISBN 9780252081347. US $28.00 (paperback).

The 11 essays assembled by co-editors Jaime Harker (University of Mississippi) and Cecilia Konchar Farr (St. Catherine University) in This Book Is an Action: Feminist Print Culture and Activist Aesthetics affirm the significance of print culture as a form of activism within second-wave feminism. Viewing print as a revolutionary form of self-expression, feminists built a communications network – authors, illustrators, typesetters, editors, publishers, distributors, bookstore owners, reviewers, and readers – dedicated to working collaboratively to produce and promote works by, for, and about women.